photo by Demetria Provatas

photo by Demetria Provatas

F I R E W E E D  &  N E T T L E

Ever since I was a little girl, I have loved plant spirits, and known them to be medicine. Many of my oldest friends are plants. I was raised, in part, by a place, a bio-region, known as the subarctic Taiga. My parents were, in the less-than-conventional nuclear family way, a mother, a grandmother, and a biome.

Growing up in woods, fields, and lake shores of Eastern Finland, and since childhood, myrelationship with the Earth has always been animistic, informed by the deep knowing of my ancestors that nature is not an "other", separate but in fact we are nature.

I named my small herbal business “Fireweed & Nettle” after two of my favorite sub-arctic plant allies. To me, they are like two sisters embodying resilience, nourishment, joy of summer abundance and kitchen magic.

Growing up in a bio-region that one of my ancestral lines has inhabited for countless generations, and learning our old, land-based knowledge from family, relatives and elders from a young age, has imprinted my medicine practice deeply. Though I now live on unceded Coast Salish Territory in Pacific Northwest Coast of the US, I continue to relate to plants in the same way I always did: listening to what they ask of me.

It's been a long, winding, and sometimes solitary journey, but little by little, that practice of creating medicine for friends and family has grown into a small business, focused on local and seasonal ingredients that I grow, gather and tend. It has been an organic process, one that continues to surprise and, at times, baffle me. I did not “go to herbs-chool”, to study “traditional western herbalism”, but over the years have taken classes and done self-study to add to my ancestral knowledge-base. To be totally honest, I’m not particularly interested in the “legitimacy” that “traditional western herbalism” claims to offer, but rather in exploring the full spectrum of my people’s old healing modalities.

My father’s side of my family comes from “Palestine”, and I am in an ongoing process to explore the herbs, medicines, customs and healing lore and magic of that ancestry as well, it being less accessible to me than my Finnish side. It’s an exciting process and one that I know will enrich my medicine.

The medicines I make and share, are the very same things I take for my own physical and emotional health, and the things I give to my friends, family & loved ones. They are small batch, sustainable, seasonal slow-as-molasses (or local honey) medicine, and by default deeply intentional. 

Fireweed & Nettle is a hand-crafted, small batch apothecary, based on the practices of ancestral folk herbalism, old ways, resilience, self-care, Old Ways, offering and reciprocity, plant-lore, magic, wild medicine, restorative organic gardening, and the medicine of place and spirit. 

It is my mission to work with plants in non-extractive ways so I don't work with rare plants (check the United Plant Savers list), find local and ancestral equivalents to exotic "herbs of the moment". I only rarely work with plants with whom I didn't personally interact with in the harvest and growing process (these come from trusted sources). I also have an ongoing process of learning how to work with indigenous plants on unceded Indigenous Land in a way that is in integrity. These practices include, but are not limited to bio-regional learning, cultivating the native plants I do work with, doing physical and spiritual reciprocity work, participating in bio-regional land conservation, listening to indigenous leadership and elevating those voices in my limited reach and capacity, and willingness to learn from mistakes, and decolonize my own lens on plant medicine. These ways are not perfect and this process is a learning curve.  

For most of my formulations, I use local, seasonal plants, either locally wildcrafted (I only work with non-natives plants that are in the ecosystem, or abundant native plants and wild harvest on “private” lands), or grown by me, as well as some high quality, organic and sustainable ingredients from good sources. I aspire to make medicine that is healing, not just on the physical, constituents-based level, but on an emotional, ancestral, spiritual, mythological, magical, and bio-regional level.

These medicines are made with the seasons, the Moons, instincts, dream instructions, and ritual practices, in sustainable small batches with high quality menstruums and ingredients. I don’t “sell plants”, I “sell” my time and the materials needed to make the medicine I offer.

While medicine is the message, one way to speak my truth and do as I'm told by Ancestors, Plants, Places, and other Spirits, it is not my calling to "sell" "products". It is simply one facet of telling my story and joining it into the stories of others. When you buy from my shoppe, you support organizations big and small. From each update, I donate 10-20% of profits to causes that align with my work and vision for healing beyond medicine bottles.

In this shop you will also find my writings on witchcraft, ancestral skills, plant medicine, magic, activism, ancestral Sub-Boreal healing & countless other topics. However, since money is not the only objective of my work (although I do need it to keep my body sheltered, fed, clothed and generally existing), like most of my fellow folk herbalists and plantfolk I do offer a lot of F R E E  resources as well.

Sign up for my newsletter on the bottom of this page, you can follow me on facebook, instagram, or my blog, and check out my reads section for some of those resources.

I hope that you enjoy sharing my medicine. Thanks for supporting local witches!